Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Source: Review Copy from Author
TYPE OF AUSTENESQUE NOVEL: Austen-Inspired (not modern-day adaptation), Mature Audiences
SETTING: A small town in Texas named Austen, present-day
MAIN CHARACTERS: Macey Henwood (bartender and want-to-be writer who plans to remain independent and never marry) and Morgan Thornbrush (Macey’s lifelong best friend – with sometimes benefits – who wants to be an artist)
SYNOPSIS: In Austen, Texas Jane Austen’s ghost is trapped in a prison cell of a local bar. Legend has it that her ghost will only be set free if two soul mates marry in the presence of her ghost. And it just so happens that two couples are about to tie the knot this summer. Will one of them give Jane Austen’s ghost her independence?
WHAT I LOVED:
- Macey and Morgan: I found our heroine and hero to very likable, original, and relatable. I love that they both had creative outlets and how they share their deepest secrets with each other. Macey has some hang-ups about marriage because she doesn’t want to be unhappy like her parents (who’ve divorced each other four times!). She believes Morgan feels the same way because of the pact they made together when they were 17 to never marry anyone period. But now he is engaged and it rocks her to her
core…kind of like when Julia Roberts found out her long-time best friend, Michael, was getting married in My Best Friend’s Wedding. It’s interesting to see how Macey copes with and sorts out her confused and frustrated feelings regarding Morgan’s impending marriage to Gigi.
- Friends Who Become More: I love that Macey and Morgan have been friends forever and I love that their current relationship is one of “casual benefits.” It was interesting to see how things played out with these two – they blurred the lines between friends and lovers, have undeniable attraction and feelings for each other, but both seem to want different things.
- The History: Macey has been writing in her diary once a year since her childhood, and it is only after Morgan becomes engaged that she goes back to read over all her older entries. I loved this part. I loved learning the significant events of both Macey’s and Morgan’s lives and seeing how they were brought closer together by them. It was interesting to see the full journey of their relationship, the special gifts they’ve given each other, and understand the importance of their pact with each other.
- It’s Fun and Sexy: With the paranormal twist, cursed ghost, and intense attraction between Macey and Morgan this story was a wonderfully enjoyable light-hearted diversion. I especially loved the tension and chemistry between Macey and Morgan. While things would heat up pretty quickly between them, I also loved seeing how engaged their feelings were for each other.
WHAT I WASN’T TOO FOND OF:
- Sometimes Far-Fetched: I don’t mind suspending my disbelief and I was totally on board with Jane Austen’s ghost residing in Texas. But I guess the part that sometimes felt a little harder (and confusing) to follow was the bit about the spell and how and why Jane Austen’s ghost got trapped in Texas.
WARNING: Since this story contains the use of strong language and some intimate romantic scenes I’d recommend this story for mature audiences.
CONCLUSION: Austen’s Independence Day is a fresh and flirty read, perfect for summer! I’d recommend this story to readers who enjoy small town settings, paranormal elements, engaging characters, Jane Austen, and contemporary romances!
To enter this giveaway leave a comment on my review!
- This giveaway is open worldwide. Thank you, Melissa!
- This giveaway ends July 15th!